About us

The Probation Service is a statutory criminal justice service that supervises high-risk offenders released into the community.

About Us

The Probation Service is a statutory criminal justice service that supervises offenders released into the community, while protecting the public.

Who we are

On 26 June 2021, the Probation Services unified, bringing 7,000 probation professionals into our new model, either directly in the Probation Services or employed by one of the organisations appointed to deliver Commissioned Rehabilitative Services to offenders. We now have over 28,000 staff employed in the Probation Services in England and Wales and we are continuing to recruit. In June 2021, we announced the recruitment of 1,000 probation officers, meeting a government target set in July 2020.

We are now implementing the reforms to our probation services set out in our Target Operating Model, published in February 2021. These reforms will deliver a stronger, more stable probation system that will reduce reoffending, support victims of crime, and keep the public safe, while helping offenders to make positive change to their lives.

Our responsibilities

We are responsible for sentence management in both England and Wales, along with Accredited Programmes, Unpaid Work, and Structured Interventions.

In Sentence Management our focus is on strengthening the probation practitioner’s relationship with people on probation, using the right key skills, activities and behaviours to achieve the most effective outcomes and enable offenders to make positive changes to their lives. This includes more consistent management and delivery of sentence plans, better assessment and management of risk and more balanced caseloads and an improved case allocation process to support this.

For Unpaid Work, Accredited Programmes and Structured Interventions we aim to make placements and programmes available locally, with a thorough assessment and induction process, regular reviews of active cases and ongoing professional development for staff delivering interventions.

Other interventions that meet rehabilitative and resettlement needs are delivered by Commissioned Rehabilitative Service providers with cases managed according to the risk, need and sentence type. In May 2021 the government announced an initial investment of £195 million, awarded to 26 organisations across England and Wales to provide vital support services in Employment, Training & Education, Accommodation and Personal Wellbeing and Women’s Services, that help reduce reoffending, such as employment and housing advice.

For resettlement, we have an enhanced pre-release system. A community responsible officer leads on all the pre-release activities, undertaking a comprehensive assessment and developing a sentence plan aligned to need, risk, and victim issues. This applies to offenders prior to release during the final phase of prison, through to transition, and post-release.

Our probation staff are critical to the delivery of the new probation services model. We are continuing to invest in the skills, capabilities and ways of working they need to do their jobs to the highest standard as set out in our Probation Workforce Strategy, published last year. We are developing a professional register, underpinned by ethical and training standards, to ensure probation practitioners receive the training, qualifications and recognition they need and deserve for a long and effective career.

Our priorities

Our priority is to protect the public by the effective rehabilitation of offenders, by reducing the causes which contribute to offending and enabling offenders to turn their lives around.

Our Regional Structure

There are 12 regions in England and Wales, each overseen by a Regional Probation Director. The Regional Probation Directors are:

  • Nic Davies for Wales
  • Andrea Bennett for North West
  • Chris Edwards for Greater Manchester
  • Bronwen Elphick for North East
  • Lynda Marginson for Yorkshire and The Humber
  • Sarah Chand for West Midlands
  • Martin Davies for East Midlands
  • Steve Johnson-Proctor for East of England
  • Kilvinder Vigurs for London
  • Angela Cossins for South West
  • Gabriel Amahwe for South Central
  • Mary Pilgrim for Kent, Surrey and Sussex

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